From Russia with CAD
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26 Jul 2010

Brad Holtz address to the readers of

The combined Fourth International isicad Forum and the COFES Russia Seminar will be held on 21 September in Moscow. The joint event is organized by LEDAS in collaboration with Cyon Research, a globally recognized analyst firm. Brad Holtz, President and CEO of Cyon Research, is also the head of COFES, which annually brings together leading companies’ executives, industry representatives, known analysts, journalists, and others. The Moscow event is intended to enrich the isicad forums traditions by very successful experience of COFES. Holtz will keynote the event with a presentation on his research on the movements of the CAD, and he will also moderate the plenary session and selected round table discussions.

Brad Holtz 24 years ago, I made my first visit to Moscow. For those that are old enough to remember, this was in the middle of Perestroika and I was there as a technical consultant with a US government team working to bring US technology to the Russian market - a first attempt at opening the doors to real commerce between formerly bitter enemies. It was a tense, but hopeful environment. There wasn't much in the way of external sales of design technology to the Russian market at the time - just a small office of IBM and a small AutoCAD reseller. Much of the design technology that was used in Russia at the time was developed internally. One key constraint on the Russian economy - lack of access to fast computers-proved to be a major asset. Developers were forced to learn how to create elegant software that could run effectively on slower machines, while the West focused on different development strategies that could afford to waste compute cycles. Today, Russia's strength as a component supplier and research partner stems from those "hardware handcuffs" from the early days of CAD software.

COFES (the Congress on the Future of Engineering Software) is a unique environment. COFES was created after my partners and I made the following observation: For us, the most valuable part of the conferences and trade shows we attended had nothing to do with the content of the presentation - the biggest value came from the serendipitous conversations in the hallways between sessions. Each COFES is designed to foster those conversations.

So we set out to design an event that would focus on the interstitial spaces to provide an environment of "enhanced serendipity". Over the past 12 years, this has evolved into an extremely successful format that has earned its place on the schedules of industry leaders worldwide.

In recent years, we have reached out to bring the value of COFES into other global communities. In 2006 we launched the COFES India Summit, and this year we are launching both the COFES Russia Seminar and the COFES Israel Forum.

I hope you will join us as we bring the spirit of COFES to the Russian market. At the COFES Russia Seminar, we exchange the distractions of a trade show floor and the formality of executive presentations for a comfortable atmosphere of interactive discussions, whether as a plenary, a working group, or one-on-one - with very influential players and innovative minds of the software world. As you join us at COFES Russia Seminar, I hope you will keep in mind both how far the Russian software market has come from its early days, and how those early constraints have shaped the strength of the Russian developer community today.

I look forward to meeting with you in September.


Brad Holtz
President & CEO
Cyon Research

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